Victor Orta’s transfer dealings looked pretty inspired at the start of the season when Leeds United were unbeaten with six clean sheets in a row. On the back of a run of six defeats in seven games, however, questions are inevitably now being asked of the director of football.
Fans are justifiably asking why Orta prioritised little known imports with next to no experience of English football, let alone a gruelling 46-game Championship season.
Therefore, if Leeds were to join Fulham in the race for Yassine Ayoub, you can expect fans to once again vent their frustration at Orta’s transfer policy.
FC Utrecht midfielder Ayoub, after all, has never played a game on English shores. And with Mateusz Klich and Jay-Roy Grot underwhelming since moving to West Yorkshire from The Netherlands, there would be plenty of suspicion surrounding the Dutch Under-21 international Ayoub.
A level above
Yet, the 23-year-old is simply on another level to Klich and Grot. Ayoub has been one of the standout players in the Eredivisie over the last three seasons and possesses a number of qualities that Leeds are crying out for.
A diminutive schemer in the mould of David Silva, Ayoub combines the vision and creativity of a Pablo Hernandez with energy and youth. He may have set up just one goal directly for Utrecht in 2017/18 but the former Ajax youth is frequently the assist-to-the-assist – providing the intelligent, perfectly weighted through ball that kicks off a goalscoring move.
HITC sources told us that Fulham have been scouting Ayoub all season – but Leeds’ lack of creativity or subtlety from central midfield positions should encourage Orta to visit his Holland hunting ground once again.
This time, however, Ayoub could be the difference maker a struggling Leeds need.